Making the decision to bring a new best friend home is exciting. But, the first week home can also be unnerving, especially if you are unsure how to deal with the antics of a baby puppy. Here are some things you should do before bringing puppy home.
1. Stock up on basic supplies
Organise the basics you need before bringing puppy home. Being prepared will help puppy settle in without you running around like crazy trying to get everything you need when puppy comes home. Here are some things you need:
- Crate. A crate becomes a puppy’s new den. A safe place to go when tired, to eat and even time out. An excellent place for puppy at night where you know it is safe while you sleep.
- Bed. There are a lot of types of beds for dogs. Get one to fit the crate. You probably do not want to spend too much money on a bed for young puppy as it may end up destroying it. Wait until puppy is older to invest in more expensive bedding.
- Bowls. You need food and water bowls. Stainless steel is best. They are hardy and can stand up to the punishment a young puppy will give it at feeding time.
- Toys. Make sure you have some fun toys, especially chew toys to keep puppy amused.
- Food. Find out from your breeder what puppy is eating. Get some of the same food. If you want to switch puppy’s diet you need to start with what it is used to eating and introduce new foods gradually. Have some treats for training.
- Restraints. Make sure you have a collar and lead, and even a harness for the car. You need to keep puppy safe when off your property and when traveling with you away from home.
2. Puppy proof your house
Puppies are little explosions of energy tearing through your house. They are curious and have a habit of getting into anything they can. Obviously, they explore everything using their mouths. You need to treat the arrival of a new puppy as you would with a toddler in your house.
Pick a central area to setup puppy’s crate and bed. As a place puppy will spend most of its time in its first week in its new home. Get down on the floor and view the world from a puppy’s level. What do you see? Everything that can hurt your puppy or you do not want destroyed, remove so it is out of reach.
Consider investing in baby gates so you have more control of where puppy goes. You do not want puppy accidents throughout the house before you get the chance to potty-train your new puppy.
3. Planning the trip home
Plan the trip to bring puppy home. Take someone with you if you can. A young puppy that has never been in a car before may be afraid of the new experience. You want this to be a good experience. Ask a friend to drive while you sit with your puppy to keep it safe. Teach it to enjoy the car ride without jumping on you for comfort.
Better still. Take a travel crate with you. Pop puppy into that for the drive. It is still a good idea to take a friend so someone can sit with baby puppy to keep it company.
Once you get home, let the adventure with your new best friend begin.
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